Business Policies and Procedures Manual
Chapter 20: Property

Contaminated Surplus Property

(Appendix 4: Radioactive Material Contamination)

BPPM 20.77

For more information contact:
   Surplus Stores

Form:  Item Evaluation

Radioactive Material Contamination

In order for Surplus Stores to accept items which have contained or may have been contaminated with radioactive materials each item must be:

  • Properly decontaminated and surveyed by the authorized user.
  • Approved or tested by the Radiation Safety Office (RSO).
  • Stripped of all labels indicating the presence of radioactive material.

See SPPM 9.60. For more information, contact the RSO; telephone 509-335-8916.

Prior to Surplus

Prior to sending any property to Surplus Stores which is indicated on the Item Evaluation form as containing radioactive materials, the authorized user is responsible for completing the steps listed below. See SPPM 9.40 for information concerning authorized user status.

For questions regarding appropriate monitoring methods, decontamination procedures, or how to handle a situation where contamination cannot be removed, contact the RSO.

Radioactive Material Decontamination

The authorized user must decontaminate and survey each item of University equipment which has contained or may have been contaminated with radioactive materials prior to disposition. See SPPM 9.80 and the Radiation Protection Program Manual (RPPM) for a complete discussion of radioactive decontamination procedures. (Note: Only RSO personnel may remove radioactive materials labels or stickers.)


The following are examples of radioactive material decontamination procedures.

Note: Authorized users are to coordinate more extensive decontamination efforts with the RSO.

Method #1

Tape patch for dry or localized contamination.

  • Place masking, adhesive, friction, or duct tape over the contaminated area.
  • Remove the tape and discard it as radioactive waste.
  • Repeat this process as long as it is effective.
Method #2

Wiping dust or accumulated contamination.

  • Apply a decontaminating agent or mild soap and water to a cloth or towel. Wipe contaminated area.
  • Rinse the area with clean water on a separate cloth.
  • Repeat as necessary.

Monitoring and Confirming Survey

The authorized user must decontaminate and monitor for radioactivity each item which is to be sent to Surplus Stores (see SPPM 9.60).

The authorized user must contact the RSO to perform a confirming survey to ensure the item is decontaminated.

Property Release Survey

The RSO affixes a completed, reviewed, and stamped Laboratory Survey form to each item which RSO personnel have surveyed and found to be free of radioactive contamination (see SPPM 9.60).

Removing Labels

Following a successful decontamination and confirming survey RSO personnel must ensure that all radioactive materials labels or stickers are completely defaced or removed. (Note: Only RSO personnel may remove radioactive materials labels or stickers.) See SPPM 9.60 and the RPPM.

Item Evaluation Form

The authorized user must attach a completed Item Evaluation form listing the specific radioactive material(s) which caused the contamination and the decontamination method which was used.

Revisions:  See BPPM 20.77 revision history.